Yeni Wong, Chair and Co-founder
Ms. Wong is actively involved in national and local business and community affairs. Her Washington, D.C. business affiliations include service as Chair of the Board of Directors and CEO of Riverdale International, Inc., President and Chair of the Board of Directors of Yeni’s Dim Sum Plus, and President and Chair of the Board of Directors of Golden Palace, Inc.
Her community affiliations include a Presidential appointment to the President’s Advisory Committee on the Arts (John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts), an appointment by the Mayor of the District of Columbia as an executive committee member on the Workforce and Investment Council; Chair of the Board of Directors of the Washington Chinatown Development Co., Board of Directors and Executive Committee member of the Downtown Business Improvement District, Inc. (Washington, D.C.), Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the Women’s Leadership Forum, a Director of the Women’s Business Center, and a Director of the National Museum of the Woman in Art.
Marybelle C. Ang, Board Member and Northern CA Chapter Chair
Marybelle Ang is an energy Attorney at The Utility Reform Network, an organization that advocates on behalf of California’s utility consumers. Prior to joining T.U.R.N., Marybelle worked at a large California utility, and also practiced energy law at the U.S. Department Energy and Kirkland & Ellis in Washington, D.C.
Marybelle has served as an elected representative on environmental issues for one of Los Angeles’ neighborhood councils, and was on the Boards of the Organization of Chinese Americans (Los Angeles Chapter) and the Asian Pacific American Bar Association in Washington, D.C. Marybelle is a graduate of Northwestern University School of Law and Stanford University.
Irene Bueno, Treasurer and former E.D.
Ms. Bueno is a government relations, policy and political consultant at the Nueva Vista Group, L.L.C. (NVG) in Washington, D.C. A former top official in the Clinton Administration, she was Special Assistant to the President and worked in both the White House Chief of Staff’s Office and Domestic Policy Council.
In addition, she was the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Legislation/Congressional Liaison at the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Ms. Bueno served as Legislative Assistant for both Senator Alan Cranston (D-CA) and Congressman Edward Roybal (D-CA). Ms. Bueno is and has been involved in political campaigns including the successful Mark Warner for Governor campaign, Gore-Lieberman and Clinton-Gore Presidential campaigns, and Gloria Ochoa for Congress campaign.
Ms. Bueno also is an active member of the Asian Pacific American community. Her activities include serving as Chair of the Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL) and member of the District of Columbia Commission on Asian Pacific Americans. She also is a volunteer for the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless and was a former board member for the Dinner Program for Homeless Women. She is a graduate of University of California Berkeley and Hastings College of the Law.
Gloria Caoile, Board Member
Gloria T. Caoile was a founding member of the Asian Pacific American Women Leadership Institute (APAWLI). She was also a founding member of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) and has served on the boards of several civil rights groups including the Filipino American Civil Rights Advocates and the National Federation of Filipino-American Associations. In May 2000, President Clinton appointed Gloria to the White House Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
Gloria promotes community and economic development programs that help the poor in the Philippines. In recognition of her work, Philippine President Fidel Ramos, in 1997, presented Gloria with one of the Philippines’ highest civic awards.
Gloria’s professional experience includes more than 30 years of service with the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), a l.3 million-member union. At the time of her retirement, she was the assistant to the AFSCME President. She stays active through special assignments for AFSCME and volunteer work promoting APA participation in the political process.
Gautam Dutta, Executive Director and California Vice-chair
A Yale and Georgetown-educated lawyer, Gautam Dutta specializes in corporate, securities, regulatory/public entity, election, and voting rights law. He has been an enforcement attorney for the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), tax counsel to California State Controller John Chiang, a commercial litigator at the Los Angeles firm of Buchalter Nemer, and law clerk for a federal judge in Washington, D.C. Between 2007 and 2010, Mr. Dutta was Deputy Director of the Political Reform Program at the New America Foundation. That program educated opinion leaders and the public about electoral alternatives (including Instant Runoff Voting and Proportional Representation). In this capacity, Mr. Dutta worked closely with the Los Angeles, Long Beach, and Pasadena City Councils. Last spring, Mr. Dutta wrote an amicus brief in federal court that successfully defended San Francisco’s innovative Instant Runoff Voting (IRV) system. Furthermore, he drafted and spearheaded legislative strategy for IRV bills in both the California Senate and Assembly.
Throughout his career, Mr. Dutta has played a prominent role in civic affairs. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa appointed him to the position of commissioner on the Los Angeles Industrial Development Authority, which he served in from 2006 to 2007. Between 2005 and 2010, Mr. Dutta served on the Board of the American Civil Liberties Union (Southern California), where he was elected to the Executive Board. A prolific writer and political commentator, Mr. Dutta has been featured and quoted in top media outlets, including Los Angeles Daily News, Boston Globe, Associated Press, Huffington Post, Politico, and AAA-Fund Blog (of which he is Publisher).
In Washington, D.C., Mr. Dutta was President of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association Educational Fund, as well as Vice Chair of the District of Columbia’s Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander Affairs. He was Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Political Monthly, and is fluent in Spanish, German, Hindi, and Bengali. He received his undergraduate degree in economics and German literature from Yale University and his law degree from Georgetown University. He is a member of the State Bar of California, the South Asian Bar Association, and the Asian Pacific American Bar Association.
Caroline Fan, Board Member and Editor-in-Chief of AAA-Fund Blog
Caroline Fan currently works as a policy specialist and has been an organizer and communications maven for international unions and grassroots nonprofits. She brings wide experience in crafting strategies for winning complex policy debates through online organizing and in the field. Caroline is a graduate of Williams College and chairs her alma mater’s Asian American alumni network. She also holds a Masters in Public Administration from Baruch College through the National Urban Fellows, a national leadership program. Caroline is Communications Adviser to the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance and has served as a speaker and trainer for national conferences including the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies, the United States Students Association, and Hmong National Development. Her writing was published in an Asian American anthology in 2001.
Caroline serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Asian American Action Fund blog, one of only two Asian American-focused blogs to receive media credentials at the 2008 Democratic National Committee in Denver. The blog’s elections coverage also received the honor of being archived by the Library of Congress less than a year after its foundation.
Tom Goldstein, Board Member
Tom Goldstein is a partner at Paxton Law Group LLP, a boutique business law firm based in Washington, DC. He has more than twenty years of professional experience working in law, government, and business. Prior to joining Paxton, he served as Managing Partner of the Washington, DC office of Perry, Krumsiek & Jack, LLP. His experience also includes practicing law as an associate in the Washington, DC office of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, serving as a legislative aide on Capitol Hill, and founding and running GroupMagellan Legal Search LLC, a recruiting firm which has worked with leading law firms and corporations across the United States and overseas.
In addition to his professional activities, Tom has been involved in numerous political campaigns over the last two decades and has helped organize fundraising events for dozens of federal, state and local candidates for office, as well as participating in other aspects of campaigns, such as field, advance and voter protection efforts. A native of Chicago, Illinois, Tom has a JD from Yale Law School and a BA in History from Haverford College.
Melissa Unemori Hampe, Deputy Executive Director
Melissa Unemori Hampe serves as Vice President at McAllister & Quinn, a mid-sized lobbying firm. Melissa brings to the firm more than 12 years of public policy experience in the House and Senate and at a national nonprofit. She advocated before Congress and the Administration for mentoring public policy and funding issues as the Director of Government Relations at MENTOR/National Mentoring Partnership, representing roughly 30 state and local partnerships and 4,000 local mentoring programs across the country.
Prior to that, Melissa served as Legislative Director to Senator Daniel Akaka (D-HI), leading a collaborative legislative and press team including personal staff and the staff of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee and a Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee in the development and implementation of the Senator’s legislative priorities. In addition, she was responsible for a broad range of issues, including education, economic and financial literacy, child and family, budget, tax, business, the arts, and community service policy. In her spare time, she was particularly instrumental in the successful Akaka in 2006 reelection campaign. Before that, she worked as a Domestic Policy Advisor for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee under the leadership of Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) and former Senator Tom Daschle (D-SD), and as a legislative and press staffer for the late Congresswoman Patsy Mink (D-HI).
Melissa hails from the Island of Maui, Hawaii, and earned her BS in biology and communication at Cornell University and her MBA in strategy and marketing from the Yale School of Management.
Dian Herrman, Board Member
Dian Herrman serves as AFSCME’s strategic communications advisor in Washington, DC. As a proud union member, she advocates on behalf of working class families. As a communications advisor, Dian participates in the daily operations of child care campaigns. She currently manages four organizing campaigns and is responsible for all communications. Before AFSCME, Dian served as deputy communications director at the Maryland Democratic Party. Serving two full years, she supervised the production of the newsletters and online communications and helped carry the message and vision of the Democratic Party of Maryland. She also dedicated part of her time to fundraising efforts during the 2006 Senate coordinated campaign in Maryland.
Dian has extensive knowledge of the political process. Her first experience in DC, was working at the Democratic National Committee as the Executive Director for the Asian Pacific Islander American Leadership Council. Dian was responsible for managing the entire APA fundraising efforts for the DNC during the 2004 elections. Prior to moving to DC, Dian worked as a travel aide to Congressman Chris Bell during his 2002 campaign. While in law school, Dian interned in the Texas legislature and took part in history when her member fled to Oklahoma to take part in what was one of Texas history’s most notable stories—the 2003 redistricting battle against Tom Delay and the GOP.
Otto Lee, Board Member
Otto has been active in city government for the past decade. As a member and chair of the Sunnyvale Planning Commission, Otto helped usher in an era of smart growth and downtown revitalization. Elected to the Sunnyvale City Council in 2003, Otto was one of the city’s first Asian American city council members. He has also served as Vice Mayor and Mayor. Otto has also played a key role in transforming the city council into a more cohesive body with effective working relationships with key city staff. Otto helped usher in a new era of civility and fiscal responsibility that helped to turn the city’s $14 million budget deficit into a small surplus and thus maintain Sunnyvale’s excellent municipal bond rating of AA+.
Otto is the founder and managing partner of the Intellectual Property Law Group LLP, which has its headquarters in downtown San Jose’s historic Old Bank of America building. Otto’s focus is protecting the intellectual capital that fuels America’s innovation. He specializes in international intellectual property, trade secrets, and fighting anti-competitive business practices.
Despite maintaining a full schedule with the city council, U.S. Navy Reserves and his law firm, Otto is involved in numerous community and non-profit organizations. He served as the board chair of ACT for Mental Health, a member of the Blue Ribbon Task Force for Nanotechnology, a member of the Sunnyvale School District’s Mini-Grant Committee, a member of the Santa Clara County Cities Association‘s Legislative Action Committee, President of the National League of Cities Asian Pacific American Municipal Officials, a member of the Moffett Field Restoration Advisory Board, and a member of the U.S. Conference of Mayors Energy Committee.
Otto Lee has a B.S. in chemical and nuclear engineering from UC Berkeley and a law degree from UC Hastings.
Bel Leong-Hong, Chair-elect
Mrs. Belkis Leong-Hong is the Founder, President, and CEO of Knowledge Advantage Inc., a woman-owned, 8(a)-certified company specializing in delivery of Information Technology and Knowledge Management solutions, strategic planning, policy and program analysis, strategic business initiatives, leadership development, change management, and workforce modernization. Her clients include Government agencies, Fortune-100 companies, and small IT companies.
She left Government service with the rank of Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense, after 30 years of public service. During her tenure at DOD, Mrs. Leong-Hong held a number of high-level positions, including Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence (C3I) Planning and Resources, where she managed the C3I resources allocation process. A mathematician and computer scientist by training, she holds degrees from Hunter College and American University, and certificates from Harvard’s Kennedy’s School of Government.
Mrs. Leong-Hong sits on corporate boards and she is also very active in her professional community. She serves as a member of the Military Academy Admission Review Board. She is also a member of the Board of Visitors of the Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland, Past President of the Northern Virginia Chapter of the Armed Forces Communications & Electronics Association (AFCEA-NOVA), past President of the DC Chapter of OCA (OCA-DC), past President of Women in Technology, and a former member of the Presidential Advisory Committee on Expanding Training Opportunities. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including the very prestigious Presidential Rank Meritorious Service Award.
Mona G. Mohib, Board Member
Mona Mohib is a Vice President in the Federal Public Affairs group at McGuireWoods Consulting, where she advises clients on a variety of issues and maintains many contacts on Capitol Hill and throughout the Administration. Prior to joining McGuireWoods Consulting, Mona was the Director of Policy and Communications at the Democratic Governors Association.
Mona is a former member of the Obama-Biden Transition Team for the U.S. Department of Labor. She also served in the Clinton-Gore Administration as Associate Director for the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs at the White House, and was Director of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs at the U.S. Department of Labor.
A native of Stamford, Connecticut, Mona graduated from Wellesley College and the JFK School of Government at Harvard. She has nearly 15 years of campaign and political experience, including work for multiple Presidential and gubernatorial campaigns.
Howard Moon, Board Member
Howard Moon is Director of Global Government Affairs at Amgen, a leading U.S. biotechnology company dedicated to discovering innovative medicines to fight serious illnesses and dramatically improve the quality of people’s lives. At Amgen, Howard helps to lead efforts advocating for issues important to Amgen with Members of Congress and their staff.
Prior to joining Amgen, Howard spent a decade working in the U.S. House of Representatives. Most recently, Howard served as Senior Policy Advisor and Floor Assistant to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. He also helped coordinate the scheduling of legislative business and provided strategic advice to Democratic Members of Congress and their staff on legislative matters. In addition to working for the Speaker, he was a Floor Assistant for the former Democratic Whip David Bonior (D-MI) and also worked for the late Congressman Robert Matsui (D-CA), the former chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC).
Howard Moon received his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1996 from Pomona College in Claremont, California with a major in Politics and Public Policy Analysis.
David Namura, Board Member
Dave Namura serves as Seattle City Councilmember David J. Della’s Chief of Staff. His responsibilities include serving as a political and policy advisor and overseeing the Councilmember’s key policy initiatives. He also continues to be active on a number of local, state, and federal campaigns.
Upon relocating to Seattle, Dave worked for a consulting firm that provided public affairs counsel to Microsoft concerning the company’s security initiatives. Prior to moving to Seattle, Dave spent six years in Washington D.C., where, in his last position, he oversaw the governmental relations program for a large non-profit organization, focusing on state labor and employment policy.
In 2000, Dave was awarded the JACL Mike M. Masaoka Fellowship, where he was privileged to work in the office of U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI). Prior to his work in the U.S. Senate, Dave worked as a legislative aide to State Representative Ron Tupa (D-Boulder) in the Colorado General Assembly, and in Denver Mayor Wellington Webb’s press office.